The Cubs have really started kicking back out the video content in advance of the new season, and I’m all about it. The documentary on the 2020 season was great, and now they’ve pushed out a new ‘Breakdown’ video on Travis Wood, Power Hitter.
Specifically, Wood and old friend Darwin Barney get into Wood’s grand slam off of Jake Peavy and the White Sox in May of 2013. Fun was had (including bonus memory of the time he hit one onto Waveland, and a fan who just missed the ball decided to pour a beer onto her husband’s head):
It’s cracking me up to know that, as Travis Wood is circling the bases upon hitting a grand slam against the White Sox, he’s *also* thinking about how Jeff Samardzija now owes him a bow (and he makes sure to let Samardzija know upon arriving in the dugout).
The grand slam was one of 11 homers in Travis Wood’s career, and came as part of a two-year stretch where he was particularly good at the plate, hitting .227/.264/.403 (85 wRC+). I could say something about how one of the best-known hitting pitchers for the Cubs in the last couple decades was still only a career .185/.208/.329 hitter (41 wRC+), and thus the DH remains necessary … but instead, I’ll admit that if there WEREN’T any pitchers hitting, then we would not have cool moments like that grand slam. So I do get the (rare!) value of pitchers hitting.
Then again, very few pitchers were even close to the hitter Travis Wood was.